Are electric toothbrushes better than manual ones? Most dentists agree that they are the best way to keep your mouth clean and free from plaque. Plaque is the sticky substance that is constantly forming on your teeth that can easily be removed with proper brushing.
Consider doing research prior to buying an electric toothbrush. Simply purchasing one does not guarantee great results. Ask your hygienist to demonstrate the proper technique for brushing. There are several types of toothbrushes available. A battery powered toothbrush is not an electric toothbrush. It is similar to a manual toothbrush. The battery power makes the bristles vibrate a little and may offer some extra cleaning. A true Electric Toothbrush plugs into the wall. The handle keeps the charge. You change out the brush heads every 3-6 months. The heads come in different sizes and types. Electric brushes also come with various features including variable speeds, gum massage, special modes for sensitive teeth, whitening, pressure sensors and reminders to replace the brush head.
1. They clean your teeth more thoroughly - electric brushes remove plaque better and faster than manual brushes. They are also able to get to hard to reach areas like the backs of molars. The American Journal of Dentistry and the British Dental Journal recommend electric toothbrushes. Regular patients are fans of the electric brushes too. In a survey of 16,000 patients published by the American Dental Association, more than 80% of them reported they improved their oral cleanliness after they switched from a manual brush to an electric one.
2. They keep you from brushing too hard - many of the electric toothbrushes have an alert that lets you know when you are brushing too hard. Some of them even slow down when too much pressure is applied. This may help avoid gum injury.
3. They are easier to use for those with dexterity issues - they are easier to hold since they are larger. The powered brushes do the cleaning for you.
4. They have built-in timers - The average brushing time for most Americans is 31-65 seconds. The amount of time recommended for brushing is 2 minutes, twice per day. You should spend at least 30 seconds on the upper right, lower right, upper left and lower left sections of your mouth. Since the electric brushes have built in timers, it is easy to ensure you are brushing for the appropriate amount of time. Some brushes even emit a beep after 30 seconds so you know to move to another section of your mouth.
5. They are greener - it takes 14-42 replacement heads for an electric brush to equal the amount of plastic in one manual brush.
Most people may feel that the biggest drawback for an electric toothbrush is the cost. There are different varieties available and the prices vary. Since they need to be replaced far less often than manual brushes, the cost may not be much more in the long run. Having a healthier, cleaner mouth is worth the investment.
Our office recommends and sells the Oral B Triumph Electric Toothbrush with Bluetooth Technology. We highly recommend using an electric brush over a manual one even if you do not purchase the brush from our office.
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